Hiring in the IT sector is predicted to pick up in the second half of 2023. Ajoy Thomas, VP & Business Head, TeamLease Services, told CNBC-TV18.com that in the IT sector artificial intelligence will become more prevalent in 2023 with natural language processing and machine learning advancement. There will be plenty of jobs in automobile, healthcare, retail, e-commerce and manufacturing sectors aceoss this year.
Year 2022 saw endless layoffs, cost-cutting and hiring freezes by companies in India. The year ended with the unemployment rate in India touching a 16-month high at 8.30 percent in December, according to data from the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE) released on January 1, 2023. Experts estimate that hiring can pick up in 2023 — so much so that 45 percent of employers surveyed by recruitment site Indeed India are foreseeing up to a 20 percent increase in hiring in 2023, compared to 2022.
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“Job postings have already reached pre-pandemic levels as per our data. As of December, job postings on Indeed’s platform are 81 percent above the pre pandemic baseline at February 2020,” Sashi Kumar, Head of Sales, Indeed India, told CNBC-TV18.com.
Hiring can especially pick up in IT, ITeS, automobile, healthcare, retail, e-commerce and manufacturing sectors. Experts also believe that with the advent of 5G technology in India, the telecom sector will drive hiring in 2023.
Non-tech sector to dominate the first half of 2023
Data by specialist staffing company Xpheno suggests that the contribution of the sector towards active job openings increased from 19 percent in April to 52 percent in November 2022.
BFSI, retail, consumer products and services, hospitality and tourism, manufacturing, healthcare, automotive, media and advertising and telecom are some sectors in the non-tech area which will continue to dominate the hiring market in 2023.
“Active talent demand and hiring action in India will continue to be dominated by non-tech sectors in the first half of CY2023. Over 90 non-tech sectors and subsectors collectively put out more talent demand than IT which used to control the lion’s share. It's only in the second half of 2023, that tech will see driving growth and hiring action again,” Anil Ethanur, Co-Founder, Xpheno, told CNBC-TV18.com.
According to data by foundit Insights Tracker (formerly Monster Employment Index) in the report titled, Hiring Outlook 2023, the BFSI industry witnessed the strongest demand for professionals in 2022, marking an annual growth of 25 percent. India’s BFSI sector is expected to employ an extra 1.6 million skilled professionals by 2023.
On likely trends in 2023, the report added that retail, BFSI and the EV segment in the automotive sector are expected to see 20 percent growth in hiring.
Experts also believe that although the non-tech sector will drive hiring in 2023, tech-enabled jobs will continue to dominate. “Technology will continue to be the most sought-after skill across IT, BFSI, and healthcare. In tech roles, product design, data science, big data, and mobile-app development retail merchandising and omnichannel will be in demand," Anshuman Das, CEO and Co-Founder, Careernet, told CNBC-TV18.com.
Hiring is also expected to peak in the manufacturing sector, according to the Employment Outlook Report for Q4 by TeamLease. At least 60 percent of employers in the manufacturing segment aim to recruit and expand their resource pool in Q4.
5G to open up jobs
With the advent of 5G, the telecom sector is expected to open up a lot of jobs in 2023. According to data by NLB Services, a leading international staffing and recruiting company, demand for technology talent in the telecom and allied sectors is expected to hit a record 25-30 percent in 2023.
“There are a lot of emerging opportunities in video content, network upgradation & migration, private 5G for enterprises, IoT/IIoT, mobility, network infrastructure and network security. Specific profiles like technical content writers (Video-OTT), networking engineers, AI & ML professionals, user experience designers, cloud computing experts, cybersecurity specialists, and data science & data analytics experts are in demand, remaining relevant in the next few years,” Sachin Alug, CEO, NLB Services, told CNBC-TV18.com.
Moreover, 5G will not only aid jobs in the telecom sector, it is also expected to create opportunities in other sectors like manufacturing, retail and financial services.
What about IT hiring?
Hiring in the IT sector is supposed to pick up in the second half of 2023. Ajoy Thomas, VP and Business Head, TeamLease Services, told CNBC-TV18.com that in the IT sector AI will become more prevalent in 2023 with natural language processing and machine learning advancement.
“The key skill sets and expertise looked out for will be in the areas of machine learning, data engineering and information security, and many roles across entry- to senior leadership-level roles skilled IT professionals, data scientists, mobile applications, big data, artificial intelligence, virtual reality and augmented reality,” added Thomas.
As per Ethanur of Xpheno the top six hot skills for the IT sector in 2023 will be - full stack engineer, data engineers & data analysts, frontend engineers, SRE/DevOps, data scientists and backend developer.
“The collective active demand across these skills is over 18,000 jobs. Accounting for over 14 percent of total active tech talent demand in India, this group of top skills continues to dominate the tech hiring space despite the overall drop in hiring. This pool of top talent has seen net growth ranging from 5-21 percent over the last 12 months. While new skills could come in and take a lead, these six skills will continue to be in demand in 2023,” added Ethanur.
Tech skills that include SQL Server, MongoDB, ASP.Net, MVC, Azure Servers, and Azure DevOps VSTS will also be dominant, as per Kumar from Indeed India.
Tier 2 and 3 cities emergent
Although tier 1 cities will still have major dominance in hiring, tier 2 and 3 cities will also play a major role.
“Technology led growth has created significant demand for tech professionals in tier 2 and 3 cities. Many tier 2 and 3 cities in India have a growing number of technology and innovation hubs, and are home to a number of successful tech startups and other organisations that may be looking to hire tech professionals,” said Nikunj Verma, Co-Founder and CEO, Cutshort.
According to Das from Careernet, if there is no impact of COVID-19, then there will be 65 percent hiring in tier 1 cities, 25 percent hiring in tier 2 cities, and 10 percent hiring in tier 3 cities in the technology, product, and digital marketing profile.
For retailing and other pan-India businesses, there will be 40 percent hiring in tier 1 cities, 30 percent hiring in tier 2, and 30 percent hiring in tier 3 cities.
Thomas of TeamLease mentioned that majority of the hiring will be concentrated in regions like Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Chennai, Coimbatore, Chandigarh, Delhi, Gurugram, Hyderabad. Indore, Jaipur, Kolkata, Kochi, Lucknow, Ludhiana, Pune, Vizag, Mumbai and Noida.
Cities like Ahmedabad, Vadodara, Kochi, Indore, Jaipur, Surat and others contribute over 6.5 percent of total research and development jobs, indicating the presence of employable talent in these cities and the fact that companies will likely continue to focus on metro cities of tomorrow, as per data by Indeed.
In addition to growth in regular jobs, gig jobs in retail and e-commerce will continue to rise in 2023, according to experts. In the next three years, nine million gig workers will join the Indian workforce, according to Indeed India
Meanwhile, because of the pandemic’s impact on low-wage jobs, it can be expected that now almost all growth in labour demand will occur in high-wage jobs.
"As more businesses digitally transform their operations, the focus is now on hot skills rather than a broad stroke of tenure or experience, which holds true in both the IT and non-IT sectors. Organizations will look to partner with the ecosystem to further India’s digital capabilities. Significant advancements in deep tech, AI, AR, the metaverse, and web3 will also enable newer opportunities for job and value creation.” said Yeshasvini Ramaswamy, Serial Entrepreneur & CEO, Great Place To Work India.